FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — There is a silver lining to Ryan Fitzpatrick’s contract holdout this past offseason. His time away from the facility gave offensive players more time to work with Geno Smith.
“We had Geno throughout the whole OTAs and stuff,” running back Matt Forte said Wednesday, when asked about Smith replacing Ryan Fitzpatrick as the Jets’ starting quarterback. “So I know if I’m used to him being in the huddle — and I haven’t been here as long as everybody else — I know they’ll be used to it.
“We benefitted from that, obviously,” added Forte, who signed with the Jets in March. “He’s been here for a while, too. So it’s not a huge change, like it’s a new guy coming in there in the middle of the season.”
He also said receivers have to get on “the same page with route-running” because Fitzpatrick “throws it a little earlier and Geno throws it, maybe, not as anticipated because he has a stronger arm.”
Todd’s tepid endorsement
Asked if teammates respect Smith, coach Todd Bowles said: “I’m sure they do. You can respect people as a player and not hang out with that person. this is football. They don’t have to be best friends. They don’t hate him. You know? They all get a long in the locker room, they respect his ability. He respects their ability.”
Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco is “day-to-day” with a shoulder injury, but coach John Harbaugh believes he’ll play. “It’s not major. We’ll just see how it feels as the week goes on.”
Rookie linebacker Darren Lee (sprained ankle) did not practice. Neither did Muhammad Wilkerson (ankle), Ryan Clady (shoulder), Nick Mangold (knee), Brent Qvale (neck) and Buster Skrine (excused absence) . . . David Harris (hamstring), Devin Smith (PUP) and Breno Giacomini (PUP) were limited.